Firm History

Building a firm brick by proverbial brick, across economic cycles, for the long term



Wang Yunming, President of Tsinghua Internet Association, and James Tan, President of the VC & PE Club co-founded 55tuan. Lin Pingping and Jin Ming, both Tsinghua PhD candidates in computer science, and Liu Chuanjun, a rocket scientist from Chinese Academy of Sciences, joined.


Replicability and scalability

Having raised its first venture capital round after multiple rejections from venture capital firms, 55tuan begins a rapid expansion across Mainland China that eventually totaled 5,000 employees across 200 cities.


Voice of entrepreneurs

James Tan joins the board of the Action Community for Entrepreneurship, joining other illustrious Singaporean entrepreneurs such as Richard Eu of Eu Yan Sang, Ong Peng Tsin of Interwoven, and Inderjit Singh of UTAC in this public-private board for entrepreneurship advocacy.


Quest Ventures founded

James Tan and Wang Yunming decide to start QuestVC to drive angel investments and M&A activities for their corporate interests.

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iJAM Accelerator

The Media Development Authority of Singapore, a statutory agency of the Ministry of Communications and Information in Singapore, appoints QuestVC as an iJAM partner. It was the first time in iJAM history that an overseas-based firm was appointed, heralding in a wave of foreign incubators to set up in Singapore.

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First investments made

James Tan wrote the first cheques for future unicorns and gamechangers such as Carousell,, ShopBack, Carro, Xfers, and many others, ignited the Web 2.0 era in Southeast Asia, and became the most sought after angel investor.


DBS Bank BusinessClass

QuestVC joins the advisory panel of DBS BusinessClass to help SMEs and startups grow their business and network across Asia.


Initial public offering

55tuan had its initial public offering on NASDAQ, raising USD 40 million and opening with a valuation of USD 480 million. It became the first Mainland Chinese firm to list after a long drought and after a wave of uncertainty over new Chinese regulations.

James Tan became the first Singaporean founder of a NASDAQ-listed Chinese company. He later received a recognition from the State Council of China.


Co-investment with government of Malaysia

Cradle Fund, a statutory agency under the Ministry of Finance of Malaysia, appoints QuestVC as a co-investment partner.


  • A focus on Southeast Asia James Tan returns to Singapore from Beijing where he has spent the last decade, and begins building QuestVC in earnest. First step, a rebrand of QuestVC to Quest Ventures.
  • Startup Singapore Quest Enterprise Singapore, a statutory agency under the Ministry of Trade & Industry of Singapore, appoints Quest Ventures for seed investments.


Environmental, Social & Governance

Quest Ventures becomes first venture capital firm in Southeast Asia to embrace ESG principles.


  • Vietnam Global Innovation Quest Ventures deepens presence in Vietnam with launch of Vietnam Global Innovation with Enterprise Singapore and the Ministry of Science and Technology of Vietnam.
  • Voice of Singapore’s startup and innovation ecosystem James Tan assumes Chairmanship of the Action Community for Entrepreneurship and took Singapore from #18 to #8 startup ecosystem globally by the time he completes his term in 2024.


Sovereign wealth funds invest in Quest Ventures

Quest Ventures Asia Fund launches with support from the sovereign wealth funds of Singapore and Kazakhstan, along with many corporations and family offices.


Co-investment with government of Singapore

SEEDS Capital, a development finance institution of Enterprise Singapore, a statutory agency under the Ministry of Trade & Industry, appoints Quest Ventures as a co-investment partner for sustainability.


Asia’s first VC-backed accelerator for socially impactful enterprises

raiSE, a statutory agency under the Ministry of Social & Family Development of Singapore, partners Quest Ventures to support high potential social enterprises to scale social impact.


Academy expands to Central Asia

Quest Ventures Academy kicks off in Central Asia with Nazarbayev University. 500 scholarships have been awarded since the Academy started in 2021.

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